Friday, February 10, 2006

A brief moment of panic / One-eyed Jack

I had a brief moment of panic at my seemingly wasted life just now, while reading one of the various blogs by foreigners in Japan. It was a post about drinking habits at Guldgossen (Swedish), if you want to know (but don't use any of the Japanese phrases there as they don't seem to be 100% correct). It's hard to put it down in words now afterwards, but as I was reading about how the Swedish and the Japanese drinking habits of students differ I had an incredibly strong feeling that I would never experience that, drinking and partying alongside Japanese students as an exchange-student myself.

The memory of the feeling is getting harder and harder to remember, but it was shortly followed by a sense that a lot of my life has been wasted. Basically, I felt that I'm getting old. A feeling that it's almost over. I'm going to be 24 this year and what do I have to show for it? No education, no real job experience, no books written, no previous relationships, etc. Though it could probably have something to do with the upcoming funeral I'm going to. Perhaps I'm worried about what kind of legacy I'll eventually be leaving after me. When faced with death you have a tendency to want to quantify your life somehow, adding up the achievements, but always coming up short.

However! As I said, that feeling was just a fleeting one. It didn't take long before I felt OK again. Strange. And then I thought about the things that I have actually started on: deciding that just wanting to learn piano isn't enough, so I started playing a bit, that just thinking "man, it would be cool to speak Japanese" wasn't enough, so I started learning.

It's not fast going, but I have to remind myself that it's not just the destination that matters; the journey itself is also half the reward.

You might know that I wear glasses. The reason for this is that I have a condition known as "lazy eye". This is when the muscles on one of the eyes haven't developed enough and so the brain automatically priotitizes the properly aligned one. This in turn causes the vision in the bad eye to deteriorate. In my case it's the left eye that's weaker.

It's most noticeable when I look in a mirror trying to look straight ahead, my left eye will be pointing a bit to the side.

I think it was discovered sometime during 9th grade (15 year old). Though I still held of using glasses because I was quite an inconfident fellow back then. I think it was only when I started driving that I started using them more often.

Anyway, I was reading on the 'net that young children can do exercises to gradually train the muscles in the defective eye to co-operate, and I though "hmm, can't hurt". That's why you might see me sometimes practicing looking at my nose, cross-eyed. Before the left eye would always shoot off to the left when I tried it, but I've worked on it and now I can do it. But strangely enough I always get a bit dizzy when doing so. I also read that young children can wear a patch over the better eye for a while each day, so the weaker eye gets practice. That's why the second half of the title of this post is suitably called "One-eyed Jack", as it was written while my right eye was covered.


Sho Fukamachi said...

Don't worry. I know the feeling you are talking about, that there's all these amazing things you could have done, but they're so age-limited you know you will never be able to do them. Believe me, drinking with japanese exchange students isn't quite the most fun you could be having with them - just ask that prick Max Breaker.

But fuck that. There's no point even thinking about it. Just concentrate on trying to make the future as great as possible, and fuck the past, and fuck the present, too. The future is the only important thing.

And hell, if you're really depressed, there's always the possibility of this generation - ie us - being able to turn back age in the future. Probably by 2050 you'll be able to at best medically reverse your aging - or at worse just climb into a perfect teenage-boy cybernetic body. Bearing that in mind, the most important thing is to be able to afford it when they come out - and they will - in other words, get rich, and look forward to everything that comes with that in the future.

BTW, I wear glasses too.

Sho Fukamachi said...

Oh, and lazy eye syndrome can supposedly be cured by surgery. It's expensive, though, and I'd recommend only going to the best.

Jacke said...

Sho Fukamachi said...
"Probably by 2050 you'll be able to at best medically reverse your aging - or at worse just climb into a perfect teenage-boy cybernetic body."

Hmm... I don't know about that 2050 time-frame for cybernetic bodies. We're almost at 2010 already.

Ainu said...

At least some know what "/* means. I don't have a clue..

Jacob-san. Näin unta viime yönä, että kirjoitit olevasi rakastunut.

Your not getting old! If our sensee seems to have done everything, it is an illusion. He's always talking and telling the things he has done, because he is a teacher. He is much older than you.

I don't know you as good as I would like, but it is clear that you are very cultured for a boy of your age. I admire you. Your blog is the best I've read.

I don't know if you have noticed, but you make me nervous! I quess, it's because I think of you as a sempai.. Someone much farther in development than I. Is this a surprise to you!?!?!

If you want to achieve something.. You have to sacrifice something..
That's one of my many mottos.
I'd like to be brave enough to speak languages in front of my friends not caring for my accent or mistakes. It is hard as hell and I stay passive.

But I have skype now and I might talk to my fathers friends in Colorado. I know that that would be much easier. Have to sacrifice some time..

Write list of things you want to do and what you want to be. Goals come clearer and easier to approach.

Jonas said...

I'd love to be a senpie...I wonder what kind of pie it is... No wait! what am I saying? I hate pie.

Jacke said...

Ainu said...
"At least some know what "/* means. I don't have a clue.."

If you mean the "lazy eye", I got the result as "karastaa" when I ran it through a translator.

"I don't know if you have noticed, but you make me nervous! I quess, it's because I think of you as a sempai.. Someone much farther in development than I. Is this a surprise to you!?!?!"

I have noticed something, but I thought it was because we still don't know each other that well...

D-M.A. said...

Ok, I tried to write up a decent comment on this post right now, but seeing that I'm too drunk right now to do so as Jonas (the other fuckhead around here) and I are going out pubbing soon, I think I'll pass. Thank you.

Ainu said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ainu said...

I think I'm retarded...

So this -> "/* is a symbol for a lazy eye..

Is it supposed be funny or what it expresses?

Jacke said...

Ainu said...
"So this -> "/* is a symbol for a lazy eye.."

Oh, sorry! I thought perhaps you cut-and-pasted something wrong when I couldn't find it in the text, but now it occurred to me that maybe you mean the %-symbol? That's the percentage-symbol. (I was a bit slow to understand that, sorry.)

Ainu said...

My fault. %..